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Finding the Right Career for You

By: Lucy Debenham BA (hons) - Updated: 9 Jan 2017 | comments*Discuss
 
Career Change Find Right Career New Job

Have you been thinking that it's time for a career change? You're probably not alone – most polls indicate that around six out of 10 working adults are unhappy in their present job. Changing career is certainly possible, but it can sometimes be disruptive and difficult. So before you jump to something new, it makes sense to confirm that the new landing spot will be better than your old launching point. But how can you find out the right career for you?

Taking Stock of Your Situation

Every successful career change starts with a serious self-assessment. You need to take sufficient time to think about your values. How important is your family? Do you want a better Work-Life Balance? What is your view of possessions? Next, consider your strengths and weaknesses. Honestly rate yourself on things you do well, and the things you don't do so well. Then it's down to the real crux of the matter – what are your likes and dislikes about your current job? What bits do you really enjoy, and what annoys you?

There are several practical considerations to a career change that must be made. Will shifting to a new and better job require any Retraining? You should be brutally realistic on this point, as sometimes your current situation may simply make full-time retraining or University Study impossible.

What are your salary requirements? Changing careers may initially involve a pay cut, and may also call for relocation. Moving to another city and working for less pay may be easy if you are single, but if not, it will have an impact on your family's emotional stability.

Consider the daily routine of your possible new job. Will you be part of a team or will you spend each day working largely on your own? Does the work involve spending a lot of time at your desk, or will you be working out of doors or at other sites? If your new choice of career involves Freelancing, will you be able to work at home? This is a good time to check into any local regulations and insurance provisions that could affect your plans for a home office.

Test Drive

Taking a test drive is one excellent way to get a better feel for a new job before you take the plunge. This may sound like a novel idea, but it is actually possible. You may be able to Volunteer for similar work, or work in the industry as a temp. If you know someone who does similar work, you could arrange to "shadow" them for a few days.

Consider spending some time working with a career coach or career counsellor. This is because they have shepherded many candidates through changes of career. They may be able to see things in you that you don't see yourself.

Consider Your Age

Somewhere in this process, the issue of your age may come up. First, be encouraged that it's never too late to change. Bear in mind that since 2006, it became illegal for prospective employers to discriminate against candidates on the basis of age alone. However, you should understand that your age may work against you in some fields. Specifically, if companies feel there is a long period of investment in you before you become profitable to them, they may shy away from older candidates.

Transferable Skills

Whenever you consider changing careers, you must spend a lot of time thinking about Transferable Skills. What have you learned in your current job that could be useful in the new one? Moving to a new job in the same industry is always easier, but if you can translate your current skills into new applications, you will open up new possibilities. If you're ready to change careers, then by all means move ahead. Just be as sure as possible that your new choice is a good one. You don't want to be doing this all over again in a few years time.

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[Add a Comment]
hi I have just finished a four year apprenticeship as an electrician for the crown estate in Windsor and it was a great opportunity. however I am simply bored of the trade and my job. I'm more of a social person I love talking to people and I have great people skills. I need a role in promotion or sales, but really cant narrow down exactly what I want to do. any help at all would be appreciated I have just turned 20 years old and would love a job that involved travelling.
matt - 9-Jan-17 @ 10:56 AM
Andy - Your Question:
I'm 42 and have been unemployed for 4 years or more due to anxiety and depression setting in after losing my business. I've been looking to retrain as a plumber and have applied to my local college. Cutting a long story short!I had a lecturer ring me to chat about my situation and he only seemed to want to put me off,which he has!!"oh you will be with 16 year olds and the level 1 is so basic"and so on. I really would like to be self-employed again, I've looked in to paintless dent removal but don't know how would fund it,I've looked into other areas like tree surgery ,locksmithing etc. I would love to here from anyone that could suggest other ideas because I feel like I'm banging my head against a brick wall,and losing faith very quickly of any chance of retraining,funding, to be able to support my family. There must be a way be I can't see it!!! Many thanks Andy

Our Response:
You could look at an advanced learner loan to the cover the costs of training in any role that you fancy as long it's a course at a reasonable level (e.g A level standard).
ACareerChange - 2-Nov-16 @ 12:20 PM
I'm 42 and have been unemployed for 4 years or more due to anxiety and depression setting in after losing my business. I've been looking to retrain as a plumber and have applied to my local college. Cutting a long story short!I had a lecturer ring me to chat about my situation and he only seemed to want to put me off,which he has!!"oh you will be with 16 year olds and the level 1 is so basic"and so on. I really would like to be self-employed again, I've looked in to paintless dent removal but don't know how wouldfund it,I've looked into other areas like tree surgery ,locksmithing etc. I would love to here from anyone that could suggest other ideas because I feel like I'm banging my head against a brick wall,and losing faith very quickly of any chance of retraining,funding, to be able to support my family. There must be a way be I can't see it!!! Many thanks Andy
Andy - 2-Nov-16 @ 12:48 AM
I am seriously thinking to change my military career. Since I have two options, I cannot give a proper decision in a way which one is good to go. Please open my mind. Thanks in advance
anyone - 16-Jan-16 @ 5:22 PM
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